This tour has been designed to take you through the heart of Tuscany and show you three of its most charming towns! Our first stop will be San Gimignano, Italy's Medieval Manhattan or the city of the belle torri (beautiful towers) as it is often called. Built as status symbols and defensive outposts, the towers played a significant role in the internecine feuds that eventually led to the town's downfall. Prior to its eventual decline into a sleepy backwater, the town prospered through its position along the ancient Via Francigena, the main pilgrim route from Northern Europe to Rome. San Gimignano’s population was decimated by the black plague of 1348 and fell from 13,000 to 4,000 people in a period of only six months. Roughly two out of every three people there died. San Gimignano was demoralized and came under Florence’s control. Towers were torn down. Florence redirected the trade away from San Gimignano and the town never recovered.
Today it is better known for its tourism, wine production and rich artwork. Piazza del Duomo is a good starting point from which to explore the historical buildings of the town. The Collegiate church, situated at the town's heart, is most famous for its frescoes of outstanding beauty, the greater part of which dating from the 14th century, represent the work of painters of the Sienese school, influenced by the Byzantine traditions of Duccio and the Early Renaissance developments of Giotto. The southern end of town is the more commercial part of San Gimignano and if you stroll along Via San Giovanni, you will find a concentration of shops selling handicraft such as ceramics and woodcraft, embroidery, leather bags, books and other souvenirs.
Next stop on the way from San Gimignano to Siena is the medieval fortress of Monteriggioni. Dating back to the dawn of the 13th century, the castle has preserved an intact structure with 14 watchtowers and impressive walls. Every July, the village goes back in time to the Middle Ages for the Medieval Festival of Montereggioni. The streets fill up with craftsmen, cavaliers and people in costumes, creating a really enchanting atmosphere.
No trip to Tuscany is complete without a stop in Siena, without doubt, one of Italy's most enchanting towns. Its medieval centre is full of majestic Gothic buildings such as Palazzo Pubblico in Piazza del Campo, Siena's main square. Twice a year the Sienese celebrate their rich medieval heritage with a horse race called the Palio, which attracts visitors and spectators from around the world. Spend a few hours exploring the town and perhaps the Duomo. The cathedral's green, pink and white marble exterior is surpassed only by the exquisite black and white marble geometric patterns and the inlaid marble mosaic floor found inside. This was the first European city to ban traffic from its main square in 1966. Sit down and, while sipping a cup of coffee, enjoy the stunning view.
- Piazza del Duomo and Collegiate Church in San Gimignano
- Castle of Monteriggioni
- Duomo and Piazza del Campo in Siena
Complete information including our phone numbers, meeting time and place are included in your confirmation voucher.
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- This tour includes a professional informative English-speaking driver. Due to strict Italian laws & regulations that protect officially licensed guides, our drivers cannot walk with you into any site but can answer any question you have from the vehicle. A professional licensed guide, where needed, can be hired on request at an extra cost.
- The tour sequence may be altered to avoid congestions but always covering mentioned sights.
- Professional informative English-speaking driver
- Private vehicle with pick up and drop off at your hotel
- Flexible itinerary
- Tips to driver and guide ( please read below for more information)
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Tel. (+39) 066244373 - US number (315) 544-0496 - Whatsapp: (0039)392 4468283